Otters having a ball

Keepers are encouraging nine cheeky little otters to play with their food by shaping a favourite treat into balls.

otter_carrotballs2-webAssistant Curator, Richard Brown, said: “Carrot is the otters’ latest food craze; it’s very good for them and adds extra fibre to their diet.

“They love to play with the food balls. Playfulness is very much a characteristic of this species, they are always into everything.”

Asiatic short-clawed otters have partially-webbed paws which give them an excellent sense of touch and co-ordination.

otter_carrotballs2-webRichard added: “They tend to invent little games. In the past they have picked up objects such as small stones, and rolled them up and down the glass in their enclosures. They now do this with the carrot balls.

“They are a lot like very messy children.”

CAPTION: An Asiatic short-clawed otter play with a carrot ball at DZG.